Loner’s Guide: Jobs for Introverts

Loners Guide: Jobs for IntrovertsSmited, slighted, stomped on by the corporate world. The word loner has become a blasphemous word amongst the circles of the socially elect.  True, at times loners can be socially inept, but sometimes we aren’t.  Sometimes our only wish is to be left alone.  Is that too much to ask?

We all know that working is a necessity of life. The greatest strife comes when the socially sensitive find themselves in repugnant, straining, socially draining jobs.  If you found this article because you’re currently going through  such a stressful experience, read on.  If you haven’t experienced the horrors of an ill-fitted job yet, this guide may help you. At the end of this article you will find a list of possible jobs for introverts.

 FORGET “RESPECTABLE”

Janitor, garbage collector, truckie…

What is a respectable job and what is not, is a fallacy.  All jobs serve a purpose. Don’t base your career choice on what you think others will think about you. Choose an employment path you think would suit you best, not based on peoples opinions of what is and isn’t “respectable”. Remember: your worth is not gained from a title, a job, or from others. Your worth is intrinsic. You are in intrinsically worthy.  Don’t fall for the respectability ploy. Unfortunately, many parents pressure their children to pursue law and medical degrees. Failing to get into college or university is seen as a crime against humanity.  In the end, children end up submitting to their parents to please them, but often times, parents are submitting to their own preconceived ideas of what  is and isn’t respectable. Essentially, they are moulding their children into what they think will please and impress others. This common dilemma creates endless unhappiness. No one is being genuinely themselves, instead, they are being what they feel others want them to be.

LOOK FOR THE YIN AND YANG

Arty, earthy, mathematically inclined….you must focus on your interests and skills when you consider a career.  Are you good with your hands?  Do you prefer intellectual, theory based work?  Sites such as this can assist you.  Don’t forget to consider what you would least like in a job, what you couldn’t live with and commit to in a career, and the weaknesses you have. Above all, don’t create expectations.  It is unlikely that you will find the perfect Loners Guide: Jobs for Introvertsjob, as much as you don’t want to hear that.  There is always bad in the good and good in the bad, but each provide a contrast to help strengthen their opposing forces.  Too much good and you will grow complacent, and take your work for granted. The challenges, the trials and the negativity you experience helps you to appreciate the good and fully experience any joy that comes.  The key is to find a balance of good and bad.  You can begin doing this by researching.  Start with forums like this to discover both the positives and negatives of your desired career.

KNOW THYSELF…AND TAKE A PERSONALITY TEST

How well do you know yourself?  It is important to introspect and examine yourself in order to make intelligent decisions about your career. Take a home-made personality test by asking those few who know you what they think you would be good at.  If you would prefer to remain silent and unperturbed, take an online test.  Even if you can’t be bothered to finish them, they will provide you with useful questions to consider about the best jobs for introverts that will suit you.  They may also help you consider other dimensions of job seeking such as your level of commitment – whether long term or short term ans whether you prefer one single job or multiple jobs.  These following tests may help:

 

THINK: HOW MUCH IS TOO MUCH?

Money.  It’s the main reason why people bother getting jobs. But how many things do you actually need?  The old truism says that money is the root of all kinds of evil. You don’t have to look very far to see the thefts, man slaughters, adulteries, perjuries and other atrocities that stem from the desire to obtain money. Your life is limited – don’t waste your time in a job that demands too much from you.  It may pay well, but what for?  Ask yourself what is important: fancy houses and cars, flat screen T.V’s, iPods, iPads,iPhones, and every other possible gadget in existence.  Or something else that doesn’t consist in physical possessions?  Financial security perhaps, freedom, happiness.  Think about the future and how much money you will need to adequately support you, and any others who rely on you, without the excess.  Check out minimalist living  for inspiration.  Finally, once you have found, and before you apply for a job, make sure that you check the job description closely.  I work in the lowest level of my job in the library and it’s wonderful. Little expectations = little pressure. Little pressure = greater peace of mind.  Greater peace of mind = happiness.

TOSS A COIN – LITERALLY

If you are having trouble making a decision about your job seeking, toss a coin. This usually works for me. Tossing a coin helps to reveal what you really want unconsciously. If you find yourself hesitating over the side the coin landed on after you flipped it, this is a good indication that you either need to 1) rethink both options, or 2) you actually think the opposite side of the coin is the better option. Before you flip a coin, make sure you give a thorough think about both of your options.  You don’t want to make hasty, impatient decisions and use the coin as an excuse to get it over and done with.

CONTEXT, CONTENT & CASH

The three C’s of job searching.  We already know that exploring the contents of the job is important, and how much money it pays, but what about the context?  The context of the job is the most overlooked part of job seeking.  Us loners want peace and serenity away from the crowds and groups and clans of people. Customer service is the bane of our existence.  So think about the context. Being a librarian for instance, is stereotypically a Loner job.  I have worked in 4

Loners Guide: Jobs for Introverts

different libraries and let me tell you now… working in a library is not a Loner job! At least in public libraries.  You deal with people all day long.  It’s just like working in a shop, except you loan books.  If you truly want a Loner job, you must firstly think about the context of the job – is it situated in the city or some obscure back street?  Is it a huge multi-complex corporation, or is it a small family-owned business?  What are the socio-economics of the place your possible job is situated?  i.e.  is it a town where the majority of people earn a low income, a medium income, or a hefty salary?  Depending on the context of the job, it is possible to determine how many or how few people you will meet, how many staff there are, and how anonymous the work is.  Finally, don’t forget to explore, yourself.  If you are serious about finding the perfectly fitted job, you must try to gain some insight into what the job is like before you are locked in. The best way to do this is by purposely travelling to places that hold similar jobs to the job you want.  For instance, if you are wanting to apply for a job as a security guard, find a place where you can observe the security guards and how social the job is.

JOBS FOR INTROVERTS

The following list was compiled after some investigation.  Please note that in reality there is no guarantee that these will be suited to you.  They are merelysuggestions.  If you have any other ideas about jobs for introverts, please comment to help make this list more comprehensive.

 

Actuary

Archivist

Artist

Astronomer

Auditor

Biochemist

Blogger

Boat/ferry operator

Bus Driver

Cleaner

Data Entry Officer

Editor

Factory worker

Farmhand

Freelance writer

Gardener

Geological Engineer

Geneticist

Government Librarian/library assistant

Greenhouse tender

Landscaper

Mail Poster (Postie/Mailman)

Mathmetician

Medical Laboratory Technician

Mortician

Musician

Pilot

Records manager/officer

Software Developer

Statistician

Truck driver

Web Programmer

Writer

Zoologist

 

Remember to keep in mind the three C’s of context, content and cash your desired job possesses, as well as how suited it will be to your skills and strengths.  Forget the fallacy of “respectability” and drop your expectations of finding the perfect job free of faults, and you will find that job seeking isn’t as tricky as first thought.

 

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  • Me

    Let me tell you that a web programmer / developer is NOT a job for introverts. It may seem like all you do is sit and code at a computer but the reality is you have to be VERY social. That means team-work, pitching concept ideas to clients, and a lot of consultation/meetings.

    • http://lonerwolf.com/luna/ Aletheia Luna

      Sounds like a nightmare. Thank you sharing your experience @Me. I’ve heard a few conflicting opinions and experiences regarding web programming, but all job seekers who come here should definitely keep your experience in mind.

    • Lupe

      Agreed,you actually get very little quiet time,which for me is very crucial to get some coding done.

  • R

    I am being considered potentially BPD as well….hmm….I wonder if this is the latest fad in diagnoses. Maybe some of us just arrive here? Remember when so many were diagnosed ADHD….then reacationarily many less were ADHD. Lately Autism is on the radar, as is Bipolar Disorder and BPD….psychological fads?

    Anyway — I enjoyed the article. I appreciate a voice against the disgusting power of “respectable” careers. And it is true that love of money is responsible for all kinds of evil.

    I’ve enjoyed: cooking, especially as a prep cook in fine dining = lots of different tasks; working in a small manufacturing company building things with just a few others, and up moving around; studying whatever the prof tells me to :-); landscaping = lot of alone time on mower or digging in dirt; being a stay-at-home seeker of truths (no pay, maximum pleasure, but others will not allow for it for long = no such thing as a free lunch, unfortunately).

    Didn’t enjoy: working in an office place all day long under three managers; doing anything for more than a couple of years; being completely away from people all the time. I rank pretty high on introversion scale, but I need some human interaction.

    I wish everyone well on his/her path…

    • http://lonerwolf.com/luna/ Aletheia Luna

      Hmm, landscaping could be a good addition to the list R, thank you. :) And yes, so called “respectable” careers do have an immense hold on people, driving their life goals and major decisions. Amazing how far we go to obtain respect from other people, isn’t it? All the best on your job path!

  • Nan

    It is interesting…to say the least…as interverts in an extervert oriented life. I am also Borderline Personality Disorder. I am a wife and mother…I could spend 9/10 of all my time alone and be happy. But people to take care of and things to do.
    I appreciate this site as I look for a job. It be great if someone would just pay us for working so hard to fit in where we don’t really want to but need to to survive.
    I wish you all a happy heart and respect for who you are and the uniqueness of others.

    • http://lonerwolf.com/luna/ Aletheia Luna

      Hi Nan :) Interesting that you mention BPD. I’ve recently learnt that many people diagnosed with BPD are malfunctioning Empaths. We have an Empath test (if you’re interested): http://lonerwolf.com/empath-test/

      I too am searching for a job at this moment in time, so I can identify with your concerns and desires. Wouldn’t that just be wonderful if we could get paid for being us, haha
      I suppose that’s why everyone wants to be a celebrity: for the most part your get to do just that!

      Very best wishes for your job search, and that you can find an introvert-friendly one!

      -Luna

  • Roland

    I’ve been unemployed for 15 years. I recently got hired at an uniform rental company. I was ecstatic get the job. But after a couple of months, I’m ready to ditch it. The constant shifting of positions and the lack of instruction has made me think twice about who I am. I’m an introvert. I’m not comfortable with this job and would love to quit it. However, my dad insists to stay on till I find another job. He’s in the hospital with gallstones. I just lost my mom three months ago. So, its been very hard. And this job isn’t helping. I’ve been looking, but with no success. After reading your article, I feel a bit more centered to what to look for in a job. Its just getting past the ‘you need to’ order from other people.

    • http://lonerwolf.com/luna/ Aletheia Luna

      That’s great to hear Roland, that this article could provide you with more direction (mission accomplished!) Returning to work after 15 years must be difficult to adjust to, so I hope you find that job you are looking for. I’ve found that my attitude towards work really influences how much I enjoy it and find purpose/fulfilment out of it, or not. So that may be something to consider as well: attitude and perspective.

      Good luck!

      -Luna

  • Michael

    I’ve always been one to be alone and find it annoying when people wonder why I would prefer the company of myself. So, it’s great to know there are other people out there that are looking for a solitary career as well. I am heading off to college and am trying to find a career that will satisfy my interests and my “lone wolf” personality. Thanks for the article, it helps, and I can relate. Your site is great! Cheers-good luck out there!

    • http://lonerwolf.com/luna/ Aletheia Luna

      Hi Michael, I hope you manage to find that suitable field of study! I’ve heard and observed that the sciences departments have pretty introverted people. Best wishes!

      -Luna

  • MJ

    Ahhhh….I feel relief washing over me…. I am miserable in my job. I am DRAINED by most people—-they talk and talk and talk and I scream inside.

    I took the night off from work (notice-I work at night) because there is a flood warning. This is not because I am concerned about the weather. Quite contrary. The weather is wild and the sound of torrential rain on my patio is sublime. Why waste this Wonder on work? Okay, so I missed a day’s pay—don’t give a rat’s ass.

    Thanks for your site—you get it.

    • http://lonerwolf.com/luna/ Aletheia Luna

      MJ, I wasn’t aware that night jobs are so … social. What field do you work in? That way we can all avoid it!

      I’ve taken many days off from work, often to my own detriment. In our society it is rare to find solitary lines of work (I’m currently unemployed and am having a hell of a time trying to find something that sounds loner-friendly).

      Thank you for reading. I hope you enjoyed your little day of peace and quiet!

      -Luna

  • bri

    are railroad careers and merchant marine for a 50+ yr old men possible practical careers?

    • http://lonerwolf.com/luna/ Aletheia Luna

      Depends how much experience/qualifications you have in these areas Bri.

      -Luna

  • Just Me

    I have a question for whoever wants to answer. What do you do when you’re essentially locked out of your “passion” but are limited in where else to turn? I found my passion a little too late in life. International affairs and international conflicts are *fascinating* to me. I can read and talk about them all day. But the jobs all want degrees, experience, and languages, and being a 35 year old father of two with a mortgage in a crazy expensive location makes going back to school, taking unpaid internships, and long language immersions simply impractical.

    Plus my current job has everything I could ever ask for except fulfillment. Close to home, great boss, great colleagues, great environment, and great benefits, but no career path (8 years doing the same thing), soulless and meaningless work, and zero professional development to leverage elsewhere.

    So I’m in a holding pattern: the job itself is fine but plateaued, and I’m an INFP so during after-hours I’m scattered all over the place without any external direction.

    Any of you hiring a good writer with a passion for IA? ;)

    • http://lonerwolf.com/luna/ Aletheia Luna

      Hi Just Me.

      From what I have learnt myself, and witnessed in others, getting a job in a field you are interested in doesn’t always go peachy. In fact, many people advise against getting a job in a field of passion because the long, strict, money-consuming process of studying kills ones enthusiasm. Take psychology for instance. I have seen many psychology students in Universities who love the topic, but after the first or second year of studying, complain that they hate it. Same happened for me regarding libraries. I’m very passionate about the worth and value of libraries, but studying to become a Librarian made me want to stab my eyeballs out.

      There is no reason why you can’t carry on your passion quietly, taking part in forums regarding the topic online, or attending meetup groups in the external world. These are just my thoughts however.

      -Luna

  • http://www.youtube.com/FeelingShred :D-ude from Brasil

    Saying this article is AMAZING does not make justice. GREAT website!
    Anyway, my story… During the last 12 months I passed through a transformation. I always thought of myself as being “shy”, “quiet”, “loner”, etc. (I always worked with engineering projects) Then, I got my first “dealing with people” job at a hotel. IT WAS GREAT! After that, I had to get back to my “comfort zone” jobs, but this time it was obvious that it was not for me. April I started doing freelance jobs over the internet with translation and audio transcription, something that should be obvious because I learned english self-taught and many times spoke in english with tourists since 2009. “Sometimes we don’t see what’s in front of us” ;)
    Now, 2014, Fifa World Cup here in Brasil, and I was hired to be a tourist guide using my self-taught english. Back to normal life again, I am pursuing jobs that require english fluency (teacher, hotel, translator, cruise ships, you name it). I’m 26 and dead-broke, but now I know that I had this “gift” and I have a path to follow, finally!!
    So, my advice for you is: shutdown all distractions around you. I know it’s hard, but over time you will notice an increase in awareness that can give some hints of what to do. Usually it’s obvious things, but we are so distracted that we don’t notice. Cheers \o/

    • http://lonerwolf.com/luna/ Aletheia Luna

      I’m happy to hear that you have found your path! Thank you for your advice regarding find a suitable job. Developing self-awareness most definitely increases the chances that you will discover what was “right in front of your face” all along!

      -Luna

  • William

    I’ve noticed truck driver on a few list now. That surprises me because it involves always being away from home. The one spot a introvert loves the most. I generally don’t like to travel too far, but if I have too, I’m usually okay as long as traffic moves. I HATE stopped traffic and traffic jams. I’ve only recently figured out why. I’m 39 years old and I knew I didn’t want to work in the city, but it was the only job(s) I could find for years. All were short term contract jobs in the IT support industry. I generally didn’t like them not because of the people. It’s usually 1:1 and that shouldn’t be too over whelming for a introvert. The problem is general travel to and from work, or travel required at work. IT support can be hit or miss. If your stuck at a desk all day, or forced to work with a team and interact with more people then you want too, you will hate it. If you can generally assign your own work, work mostly independently, and only work with people face to face and one at a time, then its very doable. I’d say maybe 80% of IT jobs are not a good fit for a introvert. Now, I might have actually found a good fit. Its been years and I was wondering what I was doing with my life, hating most of my jobs, forcing myself to stick with them because friends and family expected it. Getting to the point I was sick with diarrhea from stress. Its cost me friends , relationships, but at least now I know why. If my new job doesn’t work out, I will know I need to make a career change. I’m not sure the career paths can be so black and white because the culture of each work environment is different. I get to start work at a university and I suspect that more of the staff are introverts and they seem to strive for quality work over quantity work. My advice is, if your working a job you don’t like, spend your evenings trying to find a better fit. Even if it is in the same field, you can find a better job that better suites your personality. While most people are programed by parents and western culture to not quit a job, if your sanity and health is suffering, you might just need too. If you can never find the right job in your field, then its just time to change the type of job you are doing. Most type A people see introverts as lazy and goalless. In truth, we are just trying to find a job that fits us. If a 1/3 of 1/2 of the population are introverts, then why aren’t more jobs suited for the life style programing we were born with?

    • William

      I’d also like to add that many jobs were not satisfying because I felt the job was unimportant. I either found the company I was working for to be a social problem, mainly the medical and insurance field.

      No matter what job you decide to attempt, try and find a company that does something you believe in or enjoy. Working for a cause that makes you feel like you are contributing to real people and the world and improving it, not just working for a money only company, makes a HUGE difference.

      I also suspect introverts want stability and most jobs now days are short term contracts. It can be very hard to get in, but universities have long term employment records (people might change departments, but rarely leave) and the work environment and culture is much better then typical corporation style jobs that are cut throat, don’t care who stays or goes, lousy management style using bully and fear tactics to control employees. In general higher education is uplifting, a good cause, and that lifestyle seems to trickle down to the employers, making the job less boring. Too many jobs are now cookie cutter jobs because management wants employees to be worthless and replaceable at a moments notice. It can be very hard to find a job that requires a specialist or a place where skills can really go, but keep searching for it. Keep moving till you find it. Never get stuck at a bad job for years on end. Life is too short for that.

      • http://lonerwolf.com Aletheia Luna

        Wow, some excellent thoughts here William. I especially love this paragraph of your comment/s, which I think other people should pay attention to:

        “No matter what job you decide to attempt, try and find a company that does something you believe in or enjoy. Working for a cause that makes you feel like you are contributing to real people and the world and improving it, not just working for a money only company, makes a HUGE difference.”

        This is extremely important, so thank you for reminding us!

        -Luna

  • Jamie

    It has been a real pleasure reading this article and comments.

    At the age of 36, it has been difficult for the past six years to understand my reasons for not enjoying previous jobs. Was production planner for 14 years, which I spent the first 8 years working a backshift. So, by the time I started, the office was pretty much empty, and by 6pm, everybody had gone home except me, which I loved. This all came to an end, when I was moved on to dayshift working with other colleagues, it was okay, but something did not feel right, the awkward nus of having to make conversation with some people became more and more noticeable.
    I finally tuck the plunge, and tried a different company doing the same work, which after 1 month, I completely felt lost, uninterested in the job and something is not right.
    For the past few months I have been working as a laborer for a refrigeration company, that has given me the opportunity to train as a refrigeration technician, but once again I find myself lost.
    One thing I have always wanted do since I was 13 is drive trucks, and now more than ever, I believe this is where my true job lies. I just wished my family and friends would understand the reasons for this, as they think its crazy to give up a career as a refrigeration engineer where I can earn a 3rd more than truck driving here in the UK.

    • http://lonerwolf.com Aletheia Luna

      Jamie, I encourage you to listen to your gut when it comes to finding job satisfaction. As you have read in the comments, and as we can observe all around the world, thousands of people suffer simply because they don’t listen to the small, silent voice within them, instead choosing to listen to what other people think is best, and the most suitable job for them.
      -L

  • https://www.etsy.com/shop/3crows?ref=si_shop Sara

    hey, I’ll be one of the few commentators who found their thrill on blueberry hill. I worked for a friend of mine at his frame shop for many years, I was supposed to buy it from him (which I reallly did NOT want to do) but then in 2008 the economy tanked and I had to see if I could live off my art (turns out, I could, YAY). I’d been selling it here and there for a few years and the internet totallly opened that up for me: I wasnt about to go to galleries! no way, too shy! but I could do anything on the computer AND have a worldwide audience. Now I am frugal by nature and that’s been a huge part of the equation. I saved up enough while working for my friend to buy a cheap little house, get a decent used car and save a few thousand for a cushion. I never buy new clothes, rarely even buy used clothes, everything I have has been given to me or found (there are a LOT of people out there who have WAY too much and they feel guilty and give it to you to assuage that guilt.)

    My point is, you don’t HAVE to get a job. You can create your own life. Learn to live on less and the equation gets much simpler.

    • http://lonerwolf.com Aletheia Luna

      Sara, a very encouraging comment.
      I think a big aspect of finding success online is also about luck and chance.
      Of course, you can optimize your SEO, make really quality and beautiful items/articles and so forth, but a lot of online success is purely chance. So while some make it, others don’t.
      But by all means, it’s worth a shot.
      Thank you for sharing your experiences!
      -L

      • https://www.etsy.com/shop/3crows?ref=si_shop Sara

        Luck and chance are a part of any endeavor, I think. I worked myself up from selling my paintings on Ebay for cheap to selling prints of them on Etsy for around the same amount. During that time, I honed my skills and found out what made people excited enough to buy. No luck there, just work and persistence. The ‘luck’ was when I lost my day job! Thanks for your article.

  • Arizhel

    This article is completely wrong with many of the professions. Software and web developer jobs are absolutely NOT for introverts. These jobs are for extroverts only, especially for so-called “brogrammers”. Software development these days is not like back in the 70s or 80s; now, you have to work in “open-plan work areas”, which is basically either a big table with lots of people sitting together, or at best, cubicles with no real walls between them. There’s constant meetings, you have to stop what you’re doing and say “hi” to everyone who passes by your desk, you have to constantly interact with other developers, and there’s absolutely no privacy whatsoever. If you don’t thrive on human interaction, modern software and web development are not for you. (Given all this, it probably isn’t too surprising that software these days works so poorly and unreliably.)

    Piloting is not an introvert’s job either. You have to constantly talk to your copilot, or your passengers if you’re a tour pilot. Very few pilots have jobs flying around alone.

    Given how poorly-researched this article is with these professions, I seriously doubt its claims about other professions.

    • Leo

      I noticed Help Desk support/Desktop Support/Technical Support/Systems Administrator are not on the list, which is a good thing. Help Desk/Desktop Support/Technical Support are consider the entry level jobs for people who want to enter the IT Industry. Noticed the word “Support”. It means you WILL work with people. These jobs are great for the first 3 yrs to get experience in IT, but it will be a sacrifice until you can move in to more like programming or database management.

      • William

        Working with people is not always a bad thing. It really isn’t as black and white as that. In general, I’d agree that many IT jobs are a bad fit. That would include phone/IM support, really fast paced stressful situations, more meetings then actual work, etc.

        IT support can be more specialized, assigned projects, limited weekly meetings, and in general, a lot of personal time. Many IT jobs do require independent working skills time as well as team work.

        Also, a work environment is either good or bad and even a introvert can get comfortable in a healthy work environment WITH people. It is easy to get the impression that because one or even many jobs in a field were a bad fit, that no right job exist ever. In this day in age, with the economy and expansion of penny pinching, that many jobs are just bad. Large companies are taking advantage of the unemployment situation. The result is bad jobs with large turn over rates.

        A introvert CAN work with people if they happen to find the right staff or team or boss to work with. It can be extremely difficult, but it is possible. The trick is to quickly realize if a job is a healthy fit or not and if it isn’t… MOVE ON! Don’t feel guilty about it, don’t feel like you did something wrong, just don’t give up. Keep looking.

        • William

          I wanted to add some useful information that I think is key. This really applies to IT now days for sure, but probably is a problem in other industries too.

          If in a interview or job description, you hear or read the words being dynamic, run for the hills.

          They might make it sound like being dynamic as just being flexible and willing to do other things (they are probably sugar coating it big time) and I’m sure different levels of job dynamic responsibilities exist, but in my experience a “dynamic” job is really just very unstructured. The widened responsibilities can include last minuet assignments (very far away) coming in 3-4 hours early, or staying 3-4 hours late, pulling 12+ hour days without any advanced warning, etc. The responsibilities can be very busy bee and extremely unstructured. Generally, being dynamic means being in the dark about what is going to happen next. No set scheduled task or assignments and pretty much being/feeling completely helpless about what is going to happen next.

          The silver lining is, not all jobs are like this, but many are. If you are looking for a healthy fit job, you will likely need to avoid any and all dynamic responsibilities. So in your search and jobs that you apply for, be aware that they will likely be the worst possible fit for you.

    • http://lonerwolf.com Aletheia Luna

      Hi Arizhel,

      Perhaps in your experience the jobs you’ve mentioned were overly social, but when you read around the web, many people claim that they are ideal jobs for introverts. Many people with experience in these fields also differ from the opinions you’ve expressed. Judging whether these jobs are introvert-friendly or not really depends on your expectations of what is “introvert-friendly”. It’s very rare to find a job that is 100% isolated from people, which I think is perhaps what your definition of introvert-friendly is, if I’m not mistaken.

      No need to be acerbic. I do my best to provide quality content. It’s your choice to read it and take it on board or not. :)

      -Luna

  • capemike

    Good food for thought. I am an introvert working in an office run by very loud extroverted people. Reflecting back on my life, i think I was the happiest when I was a school janitor. I worked 2nd shift just after the students left. The floors were dirty and I cleaned them. The building was empty. No noise, no unexpected emails or interruptions. There was something very peaceful about vacuuming and sweeping long corridors.

    It’s definitely a career path worth exploring for introverts. I would trade back in a second for my current marketing career if I could pay my current bills.

    • http://lonerwolf.com Aletheia Luna

      A Janitor eh? Thank you capermike for sharing this suggestion.
      -L

  • Anonymous

    Whatever you decide to do, DO NOT do nursing! It is absolute hell for an introvert. I am currently in the final year of my degree in nursing and I am already feeling burnt out. During my clinicals I have to work at an extremely FAST FAST GO GO GO pace with non-stop constant overstimulation and interaction. I do not have time to switch off and breathe, even during so-called breaks. When I get home I am drained of energy and feel depressed. It is taking its toil on my health. I am now on anti-depressants because of it and have started smoking. Please, if you value your health, NEVER consider this career option if you are an introvert!

    • http://lonerwolf.com Aletheia Luna

      Anonymous … god, from your accounts nursing sounds terrible. I hope every person who reads this article takes your advice on board.
      All the best for the recovery of your peace of mind. -L

    • another anonymous

      Totally agree. I began to burn out in my final year. I was beyond disappointed at all the rhetoric around good mental health and self-care espoused by nursing staff… and yet if you tried to do that for yourself, you never heard the end of it. Everything and everyone else comes first. At your expense. Balance is key and you will not find it in this profession. I gave it up to retain my sanity.

  • https://www.facebook.com/marie.zirklova Marie Zirklova

    Hi, this is a good article for introverts trying to find a job matching their personality, rather than trying to fit in a profession world that just seems to oblige you to be extrovert. After years working in a call centre and tourist information centre, I did some serious review on my career and personality, and found out I was really an introvert taking jobs that were not for suitable for me. I don’t mind meeting people, but from time to time, not the whole day long, and I prefer quiet and solitude, so I find the article inspiring for new job search. But I would have one suggestion – since my original study field was music, I recommend to differ between musical composer and musical interpreteur. Being on stage is based on creating connection with the audience, which can count up to thousands people at the same time ! I guess this would be a nightmare for any introvert lol .

    • http://lonerwolf.com Aletheia Luna

      Hello Marie, thank you for sharing.

      I’m happy that this article can help to inspire you to honour your introversion more in your life. Also, thanks for your suggestion about the musician field, this should be duly noted by everyone wanting to pursue this kind of career. Thank goodness for the internet and YouTube hey!

  • Ibrahim

    Excellent article! I am an introvert and everyone thought i was weird. I usually feel drained at social gatherings, parties, etc. After high school, as per the request of my parents i joined the army and till today i have a feeling that tells me this job is not for me. I tried to act like an extrovert and fail most of the times.

    so I realized that it is better to be myself and I explored things that excites me. I really like to be a Medical Laboratory Technician where minimal interaction will be involved. unfortunately, I cant be one because I am partially colour-blind.

    I am 28 years old and still in the process of a career change. I’ve looked into your list of possible introvert friendly professions. But why aren’t Accountant, chef and psychologist (considering one on one interaction involved) is not there?

    • https://www.facebook.com/marie.zirklova Marie Zirklova

      A job of a psychologist is based on a contact and communicaton with people, strangers, who want to discuss their personal problems with them. Like a profession of a doctor, the high level of human interaction can lead to burning-out. I wouldn’t recommend this profession to introverts. It seems to me like the opposite of the nature of their personality.

    • http://lonerwolf.com Aletheia Luna

      Hello Ibrahim.

      As Maria said above, professions like psychology that involve an intense amount of one-to-one interaction can lead to burn-out (especially if you’re more emotionally inclined). Being a chef is also an extremely high-pressure job that’s not recommended for introverted people who generally prefer slower-paced, more peaceful environments.

      Best wishes with your career change. We’re taught the false notion at a young age that once we find “our” profession, we stick with it for the rest of our lives. But this is not true. Most people these days go through multiple career changes throughout their lifetimes. Already, I’ve gone through about 3.

    • Arizhel

      Being a chef is not a job for introverts. You have to constantly communicate with the other chefs/cooks, with the servers, etc. Watch an episode of “Kitchen Nightmares” sometime; it shows quite well what a chef’s work is like. It’s not like cooking by yourself in your kitchen at home. And remember, there’s a reason they’re called “chefs” and not “cooks”: the “chef” is basically the boss, and he uses the cooks (usually “line cooks”) to do the actual drudgework of cooking, which means he needs to actively manage them. Managing is an extrovert’s job.

      • http://lonerwolf.com Aletheia Luna

        Good suggestion Arizhel!

      • An Introvert VP

        Horseshit. Typical misunderstanding of introversion. I’ll out manage you anyday. I’ll shout louder than you too if I really have to, I just don’t see the point. I get vastly better results without being loud than the hundreds of extrovert managers I have known.

      • William

        A chef in a large fast paced restaurant might not work out well. Also Kitchen Nightmares is a television show and not a very realistic one at that.

        I used to work in a kitchen when I was younger. I actually worked my way up from dishwasher to lunch prep to working aside the head chef for the main dinner shift. I was even left in charge a few times. In a smaller setting, a introvert could fit in rather well. The work could be considered an art form, it can be a bit repetitive, but each dish needs to be created. Its nothing like factory work. Introverts should have no problem working aside a small staff that can become friends. If the setting is right, a introvert can pretty much own much of the kitchen and his/her work and be in complete control. Sadly the place I worked at closed, but if it had been successful and I grew to earn more of a living wage, I might still be doing that today, but that isn’t how things played out. In short, I’d consider myself an extreme introvert and working in a kitchen was my favorite and uplifting early jobs.

  • Devon

    Interesting article, I am also somewhat introvert (likes being alone, quiet, etc). Unfortunately I’m unemployed looking for a job that could possibly fit into my personality. I’m not very good working in a fast paced, noisy environments, and I have a tiny bit of social anxiety. I don’t have a degree (only high school diploma). It’s also hard considering I live out in the small town/country side in Pennsylvania.

    • http://lonerwolf.com Aletheia Luna

      Devon, sounds as though you’re in a bit of a tricky situation. I would recommend taking up an online course of study (usually these are a lot cheaper than university courses, and there are minimal prerequisites). Everyone has to start from square one at some time or another. I too was in a similar position as you, having nothing but a high school certificate. However, don’t expect the perfect first job. Usually you need to study to get into a job that may suit you.

      • Moe

        Devon: Also consider free courses through MIT’s OpenCourseWare or massive online open courses (MOOCs). You can research the latter online of you want to better understand their legitimacy. No certificates, but they’re self-paced and FREE. :-)

        • http://lonerwolf.com Aletheia Luna

          There is also a brilliant website called ALISON (www.alison.com). This website allows you to gain free certified learning (certificate included). You can also study free diplomas here. The site is Irish, and is measured against Irish educational standards. Check it out. ;)

  • mel

    I dont recommend becoming an electrician. The most successful electricians are the ones with “excellent relationship building skills”. Every job advertises for that quality and it’s horrible if you dont have it. The expectations on the electrician to be a chatty, welcoming guy are so huge at my work its driven me to thoughts of suicide.

    • http://lonerwolf.com Aletheia Luna

      Hello Mel. Goodness, that sounds very extreme. Thank you for giving everyone here the heads up. I hope you’re considering moving into another less demanding line of work!

  • Mike

    Hey cool article. Ever since I was born I was obsessed with airplanes. When I was 5 years old my mom asked what I wanted to be when I grew up and wrote my answer on a piece of paper, till this day she still has that paper that says “pilot and truck driver”. Now I am 31 years old and guess what, I’m a pilot and I still love Semi trucks. I drove a package van for fedex for 10 years ( loved it). Then I took up flying lessions and got in flying the fedex feeder planes (love it). And finally my next plan is to get my class A license and drive the Semi trucks (will love it). So I love these jobs because they basically are me. But, all of this keeps me very busy so obviously I am single. I kind of wish I wanted a family or a “normal life” but it’s just not who I am. I interact with people very well during the work day, but when I am off of work I am basically done talking. I am known for answering questions with ” just the facts”. Sorry for rambling on here, I just get so excited to read about other people here who are the same way !

    • http://lonerwolf.com/sol Sol

      It´s okay Mike, it is an exciting thing to find out there is more people similar to us :)

      I am really happy you found your calling at such a young age and stayed true to it, there is nothing more fulfilling for someone personally to do what you always dreamed of doing.

      Piloting a plane is definitely on my to do list some day, it sounds like an amazing experience of freedom and liberation to be in control of yourself flying through the clouds, for now I conform with living vicariously through my paper planes :P

      Awesome stuff!

    • Ana

      So glad to find this article and like minded people who can share their advice about their working experiences. When someone has actually worked in a career they can give much more realistic advice, so thanks to people like Mike with the truck driving :-) I’v had a horrific time trying to find a job I can do (I’ve trained as a primary school teacher, dental nurse, beauty therapist and I either failed to complete the courses or had massive anxiety attacks and had to leave the jobs) so I’ve realised that I must be looking at the wrong type of employment. At the moment I’m doing a legal secretary course but even though I’m really enjoying all the Microsoft distance training modules I’m not sure if I’ll like being in an actual office.

      Anyway, doing the home distance learning Microsoft course has shown me that I much prefer working independently and that I can excel on my own accord. The same was with my degree; essays I would get first class but class discussions were much more difficult.

      In a way i would recommend that fellow introverts do try to push themselves with things they don’t like, such as public speaking/presentations on a regular basis, (not as a career, because that would be torture and very draining, as I can attest) because it gives you confidence in yourself. Before I did my teacher training my social anxiety at speaking in public was sky-high but after having to go through the regular presentations to the class I felt a lot more comfortable and confidence because I faced my demons. I couldn’t pursue the job full time as it was too demanding with all the constant talking and interaction but it did teach me some valuable skills.

      It would be great to connect and communicate with anyone in the same boat. Not sure if I can leave my details on here but I’m on Twitter and facebook.

  • Wendy

    I’m a mortician and I can tell you it’s not a job for introverts. You are dealing with families who are at a devastating point in their lives and they can be very volital. If I could be ONLY up in the prep room dealing with the dead, I would be much better off. I wish I had considered this before because now I’m stuck doing both and it’s very stressful for an introvert. :-/

    • http://lonerwolf.com Luna

      Hi Wendy, it’s not often that I’ve spoken to many Mortician’s! I’m happy that you’ve shared your experiences here to inform people better. In the mean time, I hope those who read this article can use it as a starting point to direct their own research of other people’s experiences. Many thanks.

  • Ahdriam

    I would have liked to work at a place where I am completely by myself, I don’t even like to be around people, but that is probably impossible, and even if those actually exist, they are probably impossible for me to achieve. Maybe I should quit the humanity and live in the jungle or somethig

    • http://lonerwolf.com/sol Sol

      Hey Ahdriam!

      I understand how you feel, I thought finding a job to work with no people would be impossible as well when I was younger.

      I managed to get a job in security which is only a few weeks of studying to get a license. Then you apply to work night shifts watching monitors, or going to construction sites or other venues where they just need someone to watch over things on your own.

      Theres also self employment. Ever since, I started my own business I dont feel I need to rely on anyone but myself. Working on the internet is also something that is quite success, as you can see with LonerWolf, it provides a pretty good income for us.

      Theres many job ideas out there for the solitary, you just have to be a bit creative :)

      Sol

  • Anonymous

    Speaking from the point of view of a major introvert – it’s not even really socializing that I hate, but pointless socializing. I’m okay with interaction that’s directly related to job requirements, like meeting with clients or giving a presentation once in a while. What I really can’t stand is all of the extra schmoozing that you have to do to please your boss but that isn’t directly related to your job. Stuff like making small talk at the water cooler, team-building exercises, and pointless meetings that just waste time. This kind of thing is required in lots of corporate settings even when you have one of those seemingly introvert-friendly jobs.

    I think it would be helpful to compile a list of introvert-friendly work environments (e.g. small businesses, freelance, non-corporate) in addition to introvert-friendly jobs.

    • http://lonerwolf.com Luna

      Anonymous, thanks for your thoughts. It sounds strange, but my favourite part of working is the actual working part – everything else, the small talk, the shmoozing (as you put it), is the real labour for me, as I can see it is for you as well. Basically, when you work alongside people in any setting (no matter how solitary the actual work is), you will need to have those unsettling, pointless socializing sessions. For extreme introverts who both hate socializing while working, and while not working, there are very few suitable jobs that provide absolute seclusion. Freelance writing, blogging, and any job that can be pursued from home are the only jobs that I have read of that provide the sort of comfort that people like us look for. I’ll be interested in researching more of these extreme-introvert-friendly jobs in the future. Thanks for the recommendation! -L

    • Creasey

      Hello Friends,

      In response to Anonymous Dec 22 2013 and Luna Dec 23 2013 I have to strongly agree
      with Anons point regarding the “Pointless Socializing” aspect of many jobs. I have worked
      many jobs and the actual work itself can range from tedious to exciting but its the pointless waffle
      with staff and customers that interrupts the “real” work that frustrates me. The scenario where
      you meet a colleague in the corridor and instead of short mutual “hellos” and “great weather
      today” you have to stop and go through a small talk episode lasting 5 to 10 minutes where you
      learn nothing new about stuff that has no relevance to you or to your job is excruciating. I do it I
      suppose because I don’t want to appear unfriendly (I’m very friendly normally) or appear impolite
      (I’m very polite generally). Maybe I do it because society does not allow us to be short and snappy
      and keep walking – you can forget favorable treatment and promotion if you did. If I were working in a
      a department with 3 or 4 staff and they all knew me well and understood I was “quiet” and didn’t
      expect small talk all the time I could successfully work there regardless of how extrovert the
      department was. I would consider it my job to create that understanding with my co-workers but the
      problem in the long term is that co-workers come and go and to maintain that understanding is
      nigh impossible in most corporate workplaces. The logical solution possibly is to have introverts
      together in the same workplace area (maybe regardless of role) where an understanding exists
      and people are allowed to complete their work in peace. The current scenario where everyone is expected to
      be as sociable as the most sociable person in the company just doesn’t make sense if you believe the
      happy staff are good staff motto. You could be the owner of a software company and you have employed
      the best software programmer in the country and you are paying him or her $100,000 a year but if he or
      she is introverted and is expected to sit beside the noisy extroverts in the cubicle next door, and beside
      the water cooler chatters and beside the manager that listens to pop music radio all day then your are not going to get much return for your $100,000. How many companies have lost talented and hard working staff
      just because the concept and requirements of introverts is ignored. Are introverts actually a minority in
      society or do we just appear to be a minority. In some places I have worked I would be laughed at if I asked for a quiet place to work on my own. This goes against the ethos of working life in some respects because
      a business exists to make money and staff are employed in a business to make money by creating products
      or services for customers to buy and create money so therefore anything that allows an employee to work
      better should create more happy customers and therefore more money for the business. But this is not reality for some reason – try asking the manager who has listened to the pop music radio station in work for 10 years to turn it off so you can work better and make the company more money.

      Okay I have gone on a bit of a rant there, sorry about that. Thanks to all the contributors here, it makes for
      encouraging reading. To finish I will propose a hypothetical scenario whereby an introvert starts a
      company and only employs introverts or those sympathetic to the introverts way of thinking. Will it be a success, will it be more successful than its competitors? Will productivity be higher? Will stress levels be less?

      Somehow the stigma of being an introvert, a loner, quiet, needs to be broken and certain people need to start thinking “What this company needs is a half dozen hardworking introverts to bring balance to this noisy, shallow and low production company”

      Regards Y’all,
      Creasey.

  • jsk

    There is lack of job offers. I have sent hundreds cv’s and nobody hasn’t phoned me back, besides jobs in sales. Thats why I’m thinking of becoming sales rep cause I like money

    • http://lonerwolf.com Luna

      Jsk, thanks for leaving a comment. I’m currently dealing with a lack of job offers in my own country (Australia). Unfortunately in these situations we, as introverts, can’t pick and choose at our leisure. So I have resigned myself to taking the plunge into applying for more social-spectrum jobs. In the end this may not be a bad thing, and may assist us with developing and deepening skill sets. Good luck with the job search Jsk!

  • Nobody

    i’ve no idea of what i want to do, but i know i don’t want a job that is necessary to be always dealing with other people, i just don’t like, i prefer to be on my own

    i didn’t like any of these jobs, but let us see what life will bring me

    • http://lonerwolf.com Luna

      Hello Nobody, thanks for sharing your concerns. It’s very difficult to find a job that you both love, and you don’t have to deal with a living soul in. Try researching a few of these jobs. Working as a cleaner or statistician, for instance, still requires interacting with people from time to time, but mostly these professions get to work more than 50% of the time alone, depending on what company employs them. It’s unrealistic to find a job or career that you will burn with passion for, so perhaps this is one impediment to your success in finding a suitable job?

    • William

      I’d recommend at least attempting to work with other people in smaller numbers. Just because you can’t work in some work settings doesn’t mean you can’t ever find a good fit.

      A introvert will simply have to work out of his/her comfort zone for a few weeks or even a month after starting a new job. Starting a new job is just the worst. If you can’t get comfortable long term, connect with anyone, then keep looking.

      My last job, I hated the travel required ( I was just lied to with a placing agency about the travel requirements) and I wasn’t a good fit with the management style, but I did connect with a lot of the staff. Non chatty types tend to seek each other out and can hangout and work without the need to have random mouth diarrhea. In short, I came to enjoy some of my co-workers who likely had a similar personality. Not everyone in the work place has a loud type A personality that wants to invite you to the biggest social event in town or chat your ear off till you fall in to a coma.

  • Ann

    Most helpful thing I’ve found regarding actual introverted people. thank you for being realistic and for giving useful, thoughtful advice from someone who understands.

    • http://lonerwolf.com/ Luna

      Ann, many thanks for your kind comment! I hope these suggestions make some kind of impact in your life. Best of luck in your job searching – L

  • Suzy

    Hugs and thanks Aletheia :-) :-)

    • http://lonerwolf.com/ Luna

      I’m so pleased that this article could be of some help Suzy :). Take care ~A.L.

  • Libra

    you could add different aspects of the legal profession, for example Attorneys (Lawyers, Solicitors), Advocates (Barristers), Conveyancers and legal researchers. The most prevalent temperament types in the legal profession per the Meyers-Briggs sorter are ISTJ, ESTJ, ENTJ and INTJ.

    • http://lonerwolf.com/ Luna

      Libra, some great additions here – thanks for the suggestions!

  • roo08

    this is a really, really helpful post, thank you! I’ve been terrified about finding a career since I was in high school and have made it into this terrifying thing. Right now, I’m about to quit another career path due to anxiety and I’m planning to just temp for awhile. It’s suited to skills and strengths I HOPE to have one day but ones I really do not possess now. I’m hoping I’ll be able to really figure out which sort of jobs I like and can hopefully find a long term job suited (but not too lending) to my very introverted personality.

    I’m a bonafide loner (who has taken it too far the past couple of years but i’m trying to become more balanced) and this site is really cool. I feel at home here :)

    • http://lonerwolf.com/ Luna

      Roo08, thanks for writing! I suffer from the exact same problem as you: finding a suited “career path” (which is why I wrote the article to share what I discovered in my research!) I hope you manage to find your way. It’s very unsettling to not know what path to take, when everyone around you seems to have made a decision and seems to have their lives on track. But careers and jobs these days rarely last for more than a decade, so I’ve resigned myself to the fact that I’ll probably have a multitude of jobs in my lifetime. Best wishes!

  • anonymous

    It’s YIN and yang. Not ying. Sheesh.

    • http://lonerwolf.com/ Luna

      Soree Anoneemus … I rite wit exitmint ;)

  • shirley777

    Add proofreader to that list. It is perfect for me, and for anyone who loves reading, and I hardly have to talk to anybody!

    • http://lonerwolf.com/ Luna

      Shirley777, thank you for the suggestion! I’m intrigued now, and will do a bit of research on this profession. Thanks for reading. :)

      • tom

        I haven’t much to add to the comments, just my own personal 2 cents. I am currently in another long term period of unemployment. As I realized many years ago, & sadly found out first hand, that as the old adage says, “its not what you know but who you know that matters.” Yes Sir, that is a definite truism, if ever there were one. I have all but given up on my current job search. As you likely guessed, I am also highly introverted (or more like a residential cave dweller). Being as reclusive as I am, working on social skills is straining but necessary evil (just going to the store, for example). The controlled environment is probably the most productive & in some respects, beneficial to most if not all introverts. Obviously, finding a job that fits into this construct, seems to have become if not impossible, exceedingly rare. I agree, as stated previously, that “the work” itself is what I most enjoyed when I was working. I seem to be able to handle small spasms of interaction, then the constant interaction required in most retail & related jobs. So I suppose it is essentially about finding that happy median.

        As a side note, I just wanted to mention that the current ever popular over used catch phrase “social networking” is in actuality, an oxymoron. Think about it. How can you network with yourself? Networking in itself is a social activity. I just wanted to point this obvious illogical out. Now more than before everyone is inundated with hipster related marketing idioms & rhetorical marketing jargon, but most people never take a minute to think it out.

        • http://lonerwolf.com/sol Sol

          Hello Tom!

          Its a frustrating experience, to lack social skills and need to rely on others for work. I wrote an article about that here: http://lonerwolf.com/extrovert-good-luck/ on how extroverts seem to be luckier in life.

          But Ive learned we also play a part in our fortune. Working for others is very limiting, pretending to be something you are not. When I was younger, I loved working my security job, its quiet, solitary, at night, get paid well and all I had to do was sit around watching screens. But even there I depended to some extent on my social skills every now and again to deal with the bosses.

          So I took fate into my own hands and started working for myself. Theres many solitary job ideas out there if youre willing to risk a bit and be creative. LonerWolf is an example of a site that makes some money, allows us to be solitary and do something we love which is writing. Some of our readers like working on grafts and selling them online, making a living also. Or others are into Search Engine Marketing which anyone can do with enough time and willingness to learn to name a few examples.

          I hope you can break the odds, and prove that not only Extroverts can be lucky in life! Thanks for sharing your experience and thoughts :)

          Sol

          • M D

            “Some of our readers like working on grafts and selling them online, making a living also.”

            What are grafts?

            • http://lonerwolf.com Aletheia Luna

              I think Sol meant to say “crafts”. ;)